The National Industrial Court sitting in Ikoyi, Wednesday, shifted the suit between Lagos medical doctors and the state government to next Wednesday on account of the presiding judge, Benedict Kanyib, “falling ill”.

The suit filed by Bamidele Aturu on behalf of the Medical Guild against the Lagos State government seeks a declaration that the refusal of the state to completely implement the consolidated medical salary scale (CONMESS) in favour of the doctors constitutes a breach of the agreement reached between both
parties and is therefore unlawful, unconstitutional, null and void and constitutes unfair labour practice.

About 50 doctors turned up at the court to witness proceedings.More than 30 youth also turned up, wielding placards telling the doctors to “goback to work”.

The doctors said that they were unhappy with the presence of the protesters,
who they described as “thugs”. “It shows that the government is very desperate,” said Idris Durojaiye, the
Medical Guild’s secretary. “They want to intimidate us,” he added.

In the suit No. NIC/LA/158/2012 filed on 24th April, 2012 against the State Government, Commissioner for Health, Lagos State Health Commission and Lagos State Teaching Hospital; the doctors also sought an order of perpetual injunction restraining the state government from taking any disciplinary
action against any doctor for taking part in the 3 day warning strike in pursuit of the full implementation of the CONMESS agreement.

The Lagos State government, on Monday, sacked all the doctors who took part in the warning strike.“As far as we are concerned, there is a declaration of battle line between the two parties, I don’t think there is anything to worry about,” said Mr. Aturu about the decision to sack the doctors.

“We would file a fresh case to nullify the action of the Lagos state government and, if possible, ask for punitive damages,” he added.

“Lagos state must be governed according to the law.”

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